Home health aides (HHA) are involved with patient care at the most basic medical level.
These workers help patients both at home and in clinical settings.
Jobs for home health aides include nursing homes and hospice care, as well as wound care and assisted living aides.
Before you begin studying for a home health aide job, start with this guide for choosing the right courses and online training program.
- What Courses Are in an Online Home Health Aide Training Program?
- Can You Earn a Home Health Aide Training Certification Completely Online?
- How Long Does it Take to Earn a Home Health Aide Training Certification Online?
- How Much Does an Online Home Health Aide Training Certification Cost?
- Benefits of Online Home Health Aide Training Programs
- Drawbacks of Online Home Health Aide Training Programs
- Benefits and Drawbacks of Online Home Health Aide Training Programs – Summary Table
- Types of Home Health Aide Certifications
- 4 Self-Study Tips for Home Health Aide Training Online Students
- Frequently Asked Questions
- Is there a federal requirement for students to attend home health aide training?
- Do some states require more than the 75 minimum training hours for certification?
- I have heard some states require home health aides to train for 120 or more hours; is this true?
- Do home health aides have to be certified nurse aides as well?
What Courses Are in an Online Home Health Aide Training Program?
There are several courses involved with training as a home health aide (HHA) in an online program.
While home health aides are in-person, physically interactive jobs, the training can be done over the internet.
This provides in-depth studies and lessons to teach new home health aides about the various aspects of the job tasks.
Since home health aides are literally helping and saving lives during their workday, it is essential that they understand the theory and research and basic formulas for treating patients before stepping into the real-world setting.
That is one benefit of online home health aide training.
Students are able to study the following subjects prior to taking boards for certification and getting a job as an HHA:
- Hand hygiene
- Providing a range of motion exercises
- Bathing clients
- Taking vitals and recording measurements
- First Aid and CPR
- Working with assistive technologies
- Developmental disability specialties
- Caring for mental illness or dementia
Courses cover the basics and advanced skills needed to manage medical care in these circumstances.
Reading materials and information provided in online classes is sufficient to cover the requirements for the federal level of certification and licensing for employment in any US state.
Can You Earn a Home Health Aide Training Certification Completely Online?
Yes, students can take a home health aide training certification course completely online.
Several schools have good reputations for training HHAs in the medical industry.
This includes the online programs for HHA training at:
Each of these schools offers 100 percent online training for home health aide certification.
However, the schools also have in-person training that meets federal requirements for HHA certification exams and licensing.
Students must have at least 75 hours of in-person training to be certified at the state level for employment purposes.
How Long Does it Take to Earn a Home Health Aide Training Certification Online?
According to the American Caregiver Association, a home health aide can finish online training in just two days.
However, if you are taking a college credit program for HHA studies, this will take at least one semester or up to one year for a diploma.
If you are interested in an associate’s degree as a home health aide, this will take two years to complete.
How Much Does an Online Home Health Aide Training Certification Cost?
The price for home health aide certification classes varies with online training.
Typically, according to Biz Insure, students pay about $200 for online HHA training courses.
Penn Foster, one of the top schools with 100 percent online home health aide training, charges students $800 for the total cost of the program.
As for training that is in-person, for comparison, home health aide training classes typically take one semester or one year in a college setting.
This tuition or the total fees range based on the school.
Pricing is approximately $1,000 to $2,000 for most community colleges that offer certificate courses.
Benefits of Online Home Health Aide Training Programs
Rewarding Learning Environment
Instead of stressing about how to get to class each evening, you can study in a rewarding and low-stress setting.
Your home or home office is about as comfortable as it can be for a student in-home health aide classes.
Learn when you have the freedom and time rather than being cramped with a busy schedule of in-person sessions.
Then, when it is time to complete clinical and boards for the exam, you will be well-rested and ready to face these tasks more confidentially.
Affordability Compared to College Courses
An online class for home health aide training is priced more affordably compared to college tuition rates.
As a result, you can get the training you need for a lot less money.
Rather than spending more on college classes and extra fees for the campus, such as parking decals, your biggest expenses are a new laptop to use for online courses.
Focused Classes for Streamlined Training
If you are interested in saving time with shortened, fast-tracked HHA training, online is the best way to train.
You can sign up for a program at any time and start training to be a home health aide right away.
No waiting for a seasonal startup day or to see if you are accepted for this coming semester.
Start training as soon as you become interested in learning about HHA as a career.
Professional Certificate Program
While being online and easier to do than traditional classes, the online home health aide training programs are still very professional.
You are going to have to complete in-person clinical for at least 75 hours no matter whether you train to be an HHA.
The online training prepares you to take the certification exam, which is only one aspect of what it takes to be in this career.
Online studies simply make the process of being a professional HHA more efficient.
Drawbacks of Online Home Health Aide Training Programs
Lack of Clinical and Practicum Networks
Once you complete an online training program for HHAs, you will be required to finish an externship or clinical practicum.
This in-person training requirement is mandatory by federal law for anyone who signs up for a home health aide certification exam.
Before you can take this exam, you must complete 75 contact hours.
For students in some online programs, there may be a limit to the networking needed for clinical and practicums.
You might be on your own in securing these opportunities, whereas a traditional college counselor or professor would generally have leads readily available for students in this position.
Difficulties with Internet Training
Some learning styles struggle with the internet or online training.
When it comes to going to school, being in a routine of driving to class and sitting in a classroom is almost a necessity.
Here is where each individual has to think about their own learning styles and preferences for receiving instructions.
If you are someone who hates using a computer, online training is a no-go.
Additionally, some learning disorders may make it more difficult when you complete online training, such as ADHD or online gambling addiction.
Forming Study Groups
Another reason why students in online home health aide programs struggle are their inability to form study groups.
If you cannot form a group to study with when on an online program, it makes it super difficult to study with someone.
As a result, you may have negative results when it comes time to take a certification exam.
Again, like the previous issue, this depends on the person.
You may be fine with studying on your own and having zero in-person interaction when preparing for the boards as a new HHA.
But for many, working solo is not the best scenario for medical training.
Lack of College Experience
Students who want to attend a traditional college and experience what it is like to go to school each day miss out on the online environment.
Eating at cafeterias and going to the library with other students in a collegiate setting and the scenic views associated with campus life?
It is not happening with online courses.
Therefore, some students in 100 percent online home health aide training will be unhappy due to a lack of true collegiate experience.
Benefits and Drawbacks of Online Home Health Aide Training Programs – Summary Table
|Benefits of Online Home Health Aide Training Programs
|Drawbacks of Online Home Health Aide Training Programs
|Rewarding Learning Environment
|Lack of Clinical and Practicum Networks
|Affordability Compared to College Courses
|Difficulties with Internet Training
|Focused Classes for Streamlined Training
|Forming Study Groups
|Professional Certificate Program
|Lack of College Experience
Types of Home Health Aide Certifications
National Caregiver Certification Course
The National Caregiver Certification Course (NCCC) is available through the American Caregiver Association (ACA).
This is a two to three-day, web-based course that provides students with everything needed to learn to be a successful home health aide.
Students then proceed to take the NCCC exam and receive national caregiver certification.
Private Duty Home Care Certification
The National Association of Home Care and Hospice (NAHC) provides certification for private home health aides.
The Private Duty Home Care Certification is for home care business professionals.
If you plan to work in private duty care, this is the certification that is best suited to your career goals.
You gain the support of the NAHC as a private duty home health aide.
National Assisted Living Manager Caregiver Certification
There is also the option of taking the National Assisted Living Manager Caregiver Certification (NALMCC) exam by the ACA.
These certifications are also available together as a bundle package.
The certifications are for professionals who are interested in working with aging adults at home and in nursing facilities.
4 Self-Study Tips for Home Health Aide Training Online Students
Plan for Certification Exams
In order to get employed as a home health aide in most states in the US, recent graduates from a home health aide training program are required to pass a certification exam.
There are nationally recognized certification exams available from home health agencies and organizations.
As a home health aide student, these exams are beyond the regular coursework that you must study during your training.
Start at the onset of the program with a good idea about which certification exam or exams to take upon graduation from the program.
Then purchase study guides, take practice exams, and read the latest literature on home health aides in the workforce.
Also, prepare for how much it will cost financially, as well as for the logistics of when and where to take the exam.
Set Up a Study Schedule
Start your studies program off strong with a set schedule for studying.
This includes setting aside time to read new material, as well as to use notecards and revise lecture notes.
You will be taking in a lot of new information and need to make the best use of your time.
Leaving time at some point each day for strictly studying will help you focus your energy.
Read the Latest Home Health Publications
The latest news about home health agencies and aides will be your new reading material.
Use these resources to stimulate thinking and ideas for class assignments and discussions with online students.
This will help you get outside of the box and start applying home health aide theories and concepts.
Listen to Podcasts for Home Health Aides
Find some podcasters who are home health aides. Look for those offering information about working as HHAs in the medical industry.
Seek out timely topics in the healthcare industry that you want to learn more about and listen to podcasters talk about them.
Use this tool to help you stretch your mind about HHA information.
This is essential as you prepare for the board exam to get certified after you complete the online course for training as a home health aide.
Getting your career on track as a home health aide is easier than ever before–thanks to online training and certification programs.
As you start your journey toward becoming a home health aide in your state, use this guide to learn about the necessary moves you must make to jumpstart your career.
From here, you will be one step ahead in securing the most money and the best job offers as a home health aide professional.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is there a federal requirement for students to attend home health aide training?
According to PHI, federal regulations mandate that home health aides must have at least 75 hours of training before they can be hired in any US state.
This is coupled with state regulations that can extend that length of training.
Do some states require more than the 75 minimum training hours for certification?
Several states require 76 to 119 hours of home health aide training.
These include Washington, Montana, Wyoming, Utah, Vermont, Kansas, New Hampshire, Hawaii, New Jersey, Maryland, and Rhode Island.
Thirty-three other states do not require more than 75 hours of training, and some states go above the 120-hour limit.
I have heard some states require home health aides to train for 120 or more hours; is this true?
In California, Wisconsin, Illinois, and Maine, as well as Idaho and Alaska, home health aides must have 120 hours or more to certify at the state level for employment.
Do home health aides have to be certified nurse aides as well?
In a few states–11 to be exact–home health aides must also be certified nurse aides.
Four states allow certified nurse aides to become home health aides if they receive additional training.